Thursday, January 8, 2009

Wow! A blue car! (and other things that impress me)

Before I attempted entrelac, I thought for sure I'd never be able to do it because it is just so impressive and only the best of the best know how. After gathering enough courage to start my first entrelac project (over a year ago now) I sat down, and made an entire scarf in one go.
I love love love entrelac with a gradient yarn (I used Moda Dea's Tweedle Dee above, which was sitting in my stash for along time from a sale) When I got the end of my yarn, I was feeling both impressed and foolish, I showed everyone. "Look! Just look at it! And it's so easy!" No one seemed to care, because no one is ever as impressed as you are when learning something new.

But much with every other technique, I felt so foolish for being so scared, I told myself I'd never be scared of anything knitting related again and if someone mentioned a technique, I'd immediately go out and learn how to do it. (which I also encourage everyone else to do)

So last year was the year of learning techniques. I always thought I was a rather fast knitter until I watched a few videos on the fastest knitter, and YouTube is a very scary place with their "related videos" and I quickly became consumed with learning to speed knit, not just for the sake of upping my speed, or competing or anything like that, but because I absolutely love to watch myself knit, and I love to watch my needles dance around creating stitches, because I also like to be impressed I also want this to be fast. I'm a total convert now, everything is so much easier, colourwork especially. When I first started, I loved how the knit stitch was going, I loved watching the stitches come together, I loved the feeling of picking and grabbing the yarn with my right needle, I loved my hands not really hurting anymore, but there was just something wrong with purling. It wasn't that I wasn't purling properly, but it just seemed to be very awkward to move the yarn to the front, and then I stumbled upon the Norwegian purl. Now, I've always loved Norway, big fan, but now I think I'm in love with it. Ribbing has never been easier, everything is a hundred times easier. In fact, I went from dreading any sort of purling, to loving it even more than knitting. Forget the knit stitch, there's nothing more beautiful than watching your needles dance around a purl. I needed a quick project to finish off '08. I queued the Dragon Scarf at the start of Christmas knitting and didn't have time to knit it, so boxing day was all about the Dragon Scarf. As you can see, there's quite a few inches of ribbing, no problem. It's knit length-wise, and I believe there are just over 200 stitches, 200 stitches of ribbing for many inches. Bah! Laughed in the face of all that ribbing, sat down and finished all that ribbing. I added a picot Bind Off to the ridges.

I got on a huge kick of making things easier for myself, surely if there was a way where I could fall in love with purling, there must be a way to do everything much more effectively. Then one day I'm roaming around on these series of tubes (a very dangerous thing to do, indeed) and I stumble upon this cabling without a cable needle, remembering how much of a hassle it is to bring out that needle each and every time I want to do a cable and how it can sometimes be a little awkward when working in the round, I tried it out. This time it not only looked impressive, but it was also kind of dangerous looking, what with the live stitches and all.

So I held my breath and tested it out. I'm even more in love with this technique!I'm participating in NaKniSweMoDo over on Ravelry, and my first sweater of the year is Starsky. I sat down during the first minutes of new years day and cast on, I knit a good nine inches or so and then realized I was following the pattern for the wrong size so it was a little wonky. I thought it was no big deal and ripped it all out, of course on the last row of frogging I realized I could've just ripped back to the ribbing...
So, I had to start again, and knit up to the armholes (16") incredibly fast. I probably wouldn't have gotten so far, and it would've sat at the bottom of the WIP pile if I wasn't cabling without a needle, there are cables on each row! Nothing scares me anymore!


  1. Your scarf impresses me, and my fave pic of you all year is the one I put on Facebook of you eating it - or looking like you're eating it. Entrelac is on my list of things to do this year, along with you know, 100+ other things.

  2. Your scarf impresses me, and my fave pic of you all year is the one I put on Facebook of you eating it - or looking like you're eating it. Entrelac is on my list of things to do this year, along with you know, 100+ other things.